In the 2022 offseason, the Pittsburgh Steelers gave wide receiver Diontae Johnson a new contract, paying him like a true No. 1 wide receiver. But did it pay off in 2022? I suppose that depends on who you ask but it’s hard to look at Johnson’s season and not wish there could have been more.
Johnson, like the rest of the skill players, missed Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback. As a wide receiver, your success is completely locked into how well the quarterback plays. So we can excuse Johnson’s slow start.
However, once the bye week came and went, all bets were off. The Steelers run game took off which should have freed up the receivers to make big plays. Did it? Sort of. Johnson did have his best game of the season in Week 15. But 10 receptions for 98 yards as a best game of the year for a No. 1 receiver isn’t exactly something to hang your hat on.
The whole situation is made worse when you consider Johnson finished with 86 receptions for 882 yards but zero touchdowns. Yep, you read that right. Zero. No receiver in NFL history has ever had this type of season and not one catch netted a score.
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Cast your vote and give us your grade for Johnson’s 2022 season. For us, we are going with a solid C. Average. It was a very average season. Johnson had fewer drops, which is good. But his highlight reel is going to show those catches where he backpedaled and lost years and well, that’s bad. Not everything about Johnson’s average season was his fault and we look forward to a bounceback in 2023.